Need ideas on how to open up the kitchen/dining-room/living room
Justin CastlemanJuly 8, 2013
Was thinking of tearing out the overhead cabinets or cut them in half, do new tile flooring in kitchen and dining room, and opening the doorway from the living room and dining room appx. 2ft on either side, reinforcing the structure where the new wall begins. The wall from living room to dining room is a load bearing wall. Thoughts?
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Yes, I would remove the uppers completely and widen that doorway. You will be amazed at how much lighter everything will feel, and at how well the space flows with the wider doorway. You will get some nice transfer of light between the
LR and eating area from the windows. About tiling the floors - ceramic tile can be cold in the winter, and is quite hard and unforgiving if you spend a lot of time cooking. You could consider some of the new vinyl tiles that mimic ceramic with grout lines. Plus, if you do ceramic tile, you will have to make sure your subfloor is strong enough to support it, and if you are keeping the carpet in the LR, you may have an uneven transition through the doorways.
1 Like    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 9:49PM
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Agreed with opening up the upper cabinets and much as possible between the dining and living room.
    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 9:55PM
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Waldron Designs
If you can spare the storage, remove the uppers. However, if storage is needed and you have items that can be displayed, pass-through c
    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 10:04PM
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Waldron Designs
Sorry, let's try that again without me dropping my phone!

Pass-through cabinets are also an option:
5 Likes    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 10:05PM
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I agree that you should remove the uppers, but with that you will lose a lot of storage. If that is an issue and the budget allows, I would add another base cabinet in the sink row and move the peninsula piece more toward the dining room and against a knee wall. Eliminate the barstools. Do you really sit there? Take out the angled upper cabinet and replace it with the two cabinets that used to be the upper part of the peninsula. You should end up with the exact same amount of storage. You are only purchasing one lower cabinet. Depending on your countertop material (I can't tell from the pictures) you can seam in a new piece. Then change the dining table to a rectangular one and widen the doorway to the living room. THEN think about flooring. Make sure you love your layout before you mess with the floor.
1 Like    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 9:36AM
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We had a similar layout and are quite pleased with the decision to remove the cabinets, extend the cabinet wall to the window, and add a large island with gas stove, double ovens, and a "Cheng" hood. moving the stove is not a major decision because it is electric and does not require a hood. If you are switching to gas, then move the stove to the wall on the left or to an island. We were adding gas and were able to relocate the hood from a down draft on a wall for the electric table burners to a more powerful updraft from the center island. Our new island has two cabinets on either side of stove with spice drawers on top and pull out shelves on the bottom that hold all cooking condiments. The island has a 14" overhang from a four inch base (18" wide) that we use as a 42" high bar, buffet server, desk, etc. We do not miss the larger table in the informal eating area and now have one the same size as yours. However as this is your formal eating area (?) you may want to remove the peninsula entirely, if you are adding more storage along the outside wall. You do not need to "match" new cabinets with old, but they should relate in two or three ways -- darker stain with same shape, same hardware, for example. An island can be a different wood stain as well. You could also add storage along the other side of the dining room, and have a little more flexibility here, but I would stay in the traditional range and with lighter wood. A plasma television on that wall would please the cook. Our informal dining area includes a four foot wide circular glass tabletop sufficient to seat 6. If you add an island, or keep a bar element -- or add a bistro table and chairs, the chairs for bar and table should relate, but not match if possible. Guests do use our bar chairs because they are even more comfortable than the dining chairs. Both are durable, but the bar chairs swivel. So we changed the ratio from 50/50 to 60/40. However, we also have a dining room that seats 12. So if you need to have large groups, or are concerned about resale value -- you may want to be careful about how much smaller you make your dining room. I would also consider removing some of the wall into the living area for a more open, contemporary feel. That is likely a bearing wall, but if you are in need of the occasional large table, for a dinner party you could use plywood covered by a few blankets and a table cloth, and switch the dining room and living area.
1 Like    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 10:22AM
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Nancy Travisinteriors
Yes remove cabinets over bar. Add cabinets next to doors. Take dn wall where TV is. And open other side. Leave beam for load bearing support. You can go more than 2 feet. Use wood floors though out. Paint same color throughout. I like the grays. Love French doors. Put TV directly across from sofa. Put built ins on that whole wall. Remove all small art from walls, better to have nothing than to have walls cluttered with small stuff, no stencils. Flooring and paint will make huge difference. Love yr dog.
    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 11:25AM
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Nancy Travisinteriors
Add a island move stove to wall by doors, new app stainless. If getting new cabinets go darker, use some with glass fronts. Recess lighting in ceiling . New table in dark wood rectangle. New chandelier over dining. Area rug, in both rooms. Get rid of clutter on counters. Put away what isn't used everyday.
    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 11:29AM
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This might be a way to open your doorway to the living room, get load bearing support and storage.

1 Like    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 11:33AM
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Coates Design Architects Seattle
I agree that either getting rid of the upper cabinets entirely or switching them out with pass through would be the two best options. Hope this helps!
1 Like    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 1:43PM
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Love these ideas I will be over dueing my whole house soon
    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 1:53PM
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I think your plan is right on point!
    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 8:32PM
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Michelle Lajiness
@Mathomsan5 can you post a pic of your kitchen? Our kitchen is very similar to this situation and your idea really intrigues me. I just need help visualizing it. :-)
1 Like    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 9:09PM
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Do It! We removed our head knockers the day we moved in and I don't regret it for a minute! You probably don't need the stuff in those cabinets anyway! :)
    Bookmark   July 10, 2013 at 8:10PM
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Yes, remove the uppers. With a bit of finessing, they can be turned into base cabs and made into a buffet for your dining area. Basically, turn them upside down, reverse shelves, build a base and add a top (inexpensive ctops at home stores). Place kitchen items you cannot be without in the buffet and use it's top for the intended purpose.
    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 1:28PM
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Are upper cabinets by the peninsula still a style for kitchens?
    Bookmark   August 9, 2014 at 5:24PM
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No, they aren't.
    Bookmark   August 9, 2014 at 6:07PM
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Love decoenthusiaste's suggested doorway, above.

Did you decide to remove the upper cabinets?
    Bookmark   August 9, 2014 at 7:43PM
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Love the idea of using the uppers to form a buffet - that's awesome! All of your plans are great, though I would encourage you to think about wood flooring versus tile. It is cold, noisy, and anything you drop on it will break immediately. If you have the flexibility and budget to remove the peninsula and do the island, that is even better, but you will love what you are already planning also - best of luck to you!
    Bookmark   October 30, 2014 at 5:02PM
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Dormant post.
    Bookmark   October 30, 2014 at 6:04PM
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